It is with great sadness that the family of Reuben James Balzer announces the passing of their beloved husband, father, grandfather and great-grandfather, at the age of 86. On Thursday, November 26th, after suffering from Alzhiemer’s disease and dementia for the last few years, he fell asleep for his afternoon nap and passed away peacefully while he slept.
Reuben was born on May 19th, 1934, in Langham, Saskatchewan, and it is there that he met his future wife, Esther Penner, at the age of 23. They were married one year later, on July 12th, 1958. Together they built a 42-bed nursing home in Langham, which was an incredible blessing to the community. Reuben was the producer of the Christian Television Broadcast for 5 years where he directed the choir, produced all of the music and conducted interviews.
Music was his greatest passion and so many of our memories of Reuben involve music in some way. He was always singing, dancing, playing the piano, keyboard or his organ. He could play any hymn or classic song that was ever written and knew every word to sing along.
He was always upbeat, charismatic and full of joy; anyone who knew Rueben would agree. His pride and joy was his family and his love for his children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren and God was undeniable. Some of Reuben and Esther’s most treasured times were when they were with their whole family at Christmas.
Reuben loved to serve others and his generosity did not go unnoticed. He was always willing to help someone out and often seemed to be buying people dinner. He also loved spending time at the lake, where he took it upon himself to maintain the grounds, simply because he loved to help and enjoyed doing things for others.
Other things that come to mind when we think of Reuben are his love for puzzles and making milkshakes, the thick layers of jam he would spread on his (burnt) toast, how he would sing, “You are My Sunshine,” his incredible foot massages, his ability to lift his grown children and grandchildren off the ground and his laugh. He had the best laugh.
On November 8th, 2016, he moved into Villa Marguerite. It was there where he lived the final years of his life. The family would like to thank the incredible staff at Villa Marguerite who made his last days comfortable and cared for him so graciously over the past four years.
Reuben is survived by his wife, Esther, and their four children; Terry (John), Debra (Gordon), Tony and Bobbi Jo (Francois). His legacy continues through their six grandchildren; Nathan (Holly), Jen (Will), Drea, Zac (Lindsay), Brenden (Shelby) and Parker (Kaelin), and their six great-grandchildren; Topher, Brooklyn, Ellie, Cole, Teagan and Emmett. He is also survived by his brother, Edwin (Agnes). He will be greatly missed by his family and friends.
Cremation has already taken place.
“Bless the Lord, oh my soul.” Psalm 103:2
Serenity Funeral Service – South Edmonton, (780)450-0101